What Qualities Make An App Popular?

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Sometimes an app is just destined for greatness. Remember Angry Birds? Of course you do, because it was all the rage for almost a decade after its meteoric launch from obscurity into the smartphone lime light. The franchise is now worth an estimated $210 million dollars, includes two movies (the 2nd of which was released in August of 2019), and features 17 different versions of the game for download.


That level of success is something beyond what can be accurately boiled down and offered as a tip for reproduction in a simple blog post, but there are several qualities that an app might have in order to give it the best chance of becoming popular.



Many games get popular because of their novelty. (We’re looking at you FlappyBird.) That is to say that they are cute, funny or a take on a common, everyday thing with a comical or unique spin. If you’re building something that’s just plain unique and doesn’t require a lot of learning, then you might have one of these.


However, beware that these types of apps typically have a short lifespan, and once the hype is done, usually so are sales. To make these into a viable business, you either need to find a way to create a “mania” behind your novelty or keep finding new spins on it that keep your users coming back for more (and paying you over and over again).


Timely or relevant subject matter

Sometimes apps become popular simply because they deal with or contain relevant and timely topics that everyone is interested in at the same time. This could be a flash-in-the-pan frustration reliever, like Political Smackdown, or something similar that is designed to capitalize on the current state of affairs.


Like the majority of news, these types of apps are typically short-lived and will not make a great option as a long-term viable business. As with the novelty apps, if you can find a way to stay relevant and create an app that is easily updatable to the latest trend or hot topic, then you might be able to stay ahead of the curve.


Solves a problem

The best types of apps solve problems. Real problems in the real world for real people who are real(ly) tired of their problem. If you have an audience that is willing to change their habits (and spend money) to solve their problem, and your app is a solution they resonate with, you’re already ahead of 95% of other apps out there.


The best way to determine if your app is such a solution? ASK PEOPLE! Find people who have the problem you’re solving and get their feedback on whether your solution is the right one. This category is the absolute best shot at longevity and building a real business based on an app.


Good marketing matters

The one quality that ALL of these types of apps have is a great marketing strategy. It’s not enough to push your app to the Apple App Store and Google Play and hope for the best. There are millions of other apps competing with very small screen real estate, and no one is going to find yours just because you’re a good person and you built something cool or relevant or novel. You MUST be willing to build a marketing strategy that plays to your app’s strengths, gets it in front of the right people at the right time, and that accurately portrays what a user can expect if they download it, see more https://gotanappidea.com/.  This will cost you money, but as the old saying goes: It takes money to make money.


So what really makes an app popular? The right app, at the right time, with the right marketing strategy.


Or birds, apparently.



GotAnAppIdea is an app design and app development company, primarily working with new ideas in the earliest stages of incubation. As one of the top app development companies in the Denver, CO, area, we help new start-ups get from idea to execution planning quickly, efficiently and with as little time and money invested up front as possible. Our philosophy is that failing quick and often leads our clients to better outcomes, bigger businesses, and healthier work-life balance. Need Android app development, iOS app development or app design help? Call us today!


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